Sickness continues to affect operations at Royal Blackburn Hospital

BOSSES at Royal Blackburn Hospital are continuing to review the cancellation of operations on a daily basis.

A number of non-emergency operations have been cancelled this week as the hospital experiences a high volume of sick patients being admitted displaying flu like symptoms.

Dr Ian Stanley, deputy medical director at East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “Any deferment or cancellation of an operation is done on an individual basis by the clinical team in charge of each patients care.

“We will continue to review the situation on a daily basis but can assure the public that any decision to cancel or defer is only being done as a last resort.

“On behalf of the trust I sincerely apologise for any disruption or inconvenience, however, patient safety is our top priority.

One of the latest victims is 72-year-old Mohammed Ashraf, of Brierfield, who was due to undergo a prostate operation on Monday morning.

Mr Ashraf, the son of Brierfield councillor Naeem Ashraf, arrived at the hospital at 8.45am only to be told his operation had been cancelled.

Hospital chiefs said they had contacted Mr Ashraf prior to the consultation, but Coun Ashraf said his dad had not been told.

He said: “It is absolutely ridiculous that there are no beds. You gear yourself up for the operation then find out it is cancelled.

“We’ve had no contact from the hospital since either, so we don’t know what is happening or when it is being rearranged for.

“I’m not just speaking on behalf of my dad, this has happened to other people and it is not right.”

Comments (7)

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11:21am Wed 9 Jan 13

kate11 says...

No wonder there is a surge of Norovirus when they allow a visitor to lie full length in bed with her boyfriend all day and all night ,as I witnessed over Christmas on C4 ward at Blackburn!! Apparently it was because he requested it and nurses did absolutely nothing.. What happened to infection control and telling visitors and staff alike not to sit on beds! I am absolutely disgusted as were all the other patients in that ward.. Whatever next nurses with large visible tattoos!! That is another story! Doesnt make you have faith in the NHS at East Lancs does it!
No wonder there is a surge of Norovirus when they allow a visitor to lie full length in bed with her boyfriend all day and all night ,as I witnessed over Christmas on C4 ward at Blackburn!! Apparently it was because he requested it and nurses did absolutely nothing.. What happened to infection control and telling visitors and staff alike not to sit on beds! I am absolutely disgusted as were all the other patients in that ward.. Whatever next nurses with large visible tattoos!! That is another story! Doesnt make you have faith in the NHS at East Lancs does it! kate11

7:01pm Wed 9 Jan 13

Fire Fly says...

kate11 wrote:
No wonder there is a surge of Norovirus when they allow a visitor to lie full length in bed with her boyfriend all day and all night ,as I witnessed over Christmas on C4 ward at Blackburn!! Apparently it was because he requested it and nurses did absolutely nothing.. What happened to infection control and telling visitors and staff alike not to sit on beds! I am absolutely disgusted as were all the other patients in that ward.. Whatever next nurses with large visible tattoos!! That is another story! Doesnt make you have faith in the NHS at East Lancs does it!
Yet more criticism from Kate! First in relation to this news,Kate advised how the staff didn't look happy enough in the canteen at BGH, now you're visiting at RBH & its another complaint...do you have a career trawling the wards of the hospitals seeking fault or are you just one of those nurses or staff members that moan a lot & never try to make a difference constructively? Notice you made no comment about the Trust achieving level 3 for maternity services in the NHSLA assessment, a major achievement or on other stories that highlight any good from this trust.

I wonder if you actually voiced your concerns on C4 at the time to the staff concerned...I suspect not because it's always easier to air ones views on the local papers website than to try & make any kind of constructive comment at the time.
[quote][p][bold]kate11[/bold] wrote: No wonder there is a surge of Norovirus when they allow a visitor to lie full length in bed with her boyfriend all day and all night ,as I witnessed over Christmas on C4 ward at Blackburn!! Apparently it was because he requested it and nurses did absolutely nothing.. What happened to infection control and telling visitors and staff alike not to sit on beds! I am absolutely disgusted as were all the other patients in that ward.. Whatever next nurses with large visible tattoos!! That is another story! Doesnt make you have faith in the NHS at East Lancs does it![/p][/quote]Yet more criticism from Kate! First in relation to this news,Kate advised how the staff didn't look happy enough in the canteen at BGH, now you're visiting at RBH & its another complaint...do you have a career trawling the wards of the hospitals seeking fault or are you just one of those nurses or staff members that moan a lot & never try to make a difference constructively? Notice you made no comment about the Trust achieving level 3 for maternity services in the NHSLA assessment, a major achievement or on other stories that highlight any good from this trust. I wonder if you actually voiced your concerns on C4 at the time to the staff concerned...I suspect not because it's always easier to air ones views on the local papers website than to try & make any kind of constructive comment at the time. Fire Fly

7:07pm Wed 9 Jan 13

Fire Fly says...

The hospital doesn't have a 'surge' in Norovirus. illness.

For info...this hospital trust hasn't closed a single ward because of the virus which strongly confirms there isn't a problem from the hospital side with infection control.
The hospital doesn't have a 'surge' in Norovirus. illness. For info...this hospital trust hasn't closed a single ward because of the virus which strongly confirms there isn't a problem from the hospital side with infection control. Fire Fly

11:24pm Wed 9 Jan 13

kate11 says...

Fire Fly wrote:
kate11 wrote:
No wonder there is a surge of Norovirus when they allow a visitor to lie full length in bed with her boyfriend all day and all night ,as I witnessed over Christmas on C4 ward at Blackburn!! Apparently it was because he requested it and nurses did absolutely nothing.. What happened to infection control and telling visitors and staff alike not to sit on beds! I am absolutely disgusted as were all the other patients in that ward.. Whatever next nurses with large visible tattoos!! That is another story! Doesnt make you have faith in the NHS at East Lancs does it!
Yet more criticism from Kate! First in relation to this news,Kate advised how the staff didn't look happy enough in the canteen at BGH, now you're visiting at RBH & its another complaint...do you have a career trawling the wards of the hospitals seeking fault or are you just one of those nurses or staff members that moan a lot & never try to make a difference constructively? Notice you made no comment about the Trust achieving level 3 for maternity services in the NHSLA assessment, a major achievement or on other stories that highlight any good from this trust.

I wonder if you actually voiced your concerns on C4 at the time to the staff concerned...I suspect not because it's always easier to air ones views on the local papers website than to try & make any kind of constructive comment at the time.
Complaints were made to the ward at the time and also a formal complaint is being been made ! But have to say Fire fly you seem very touchy about achieving level three so you must be a manager!!!! Having trained in the 70's i understand the system well and see that despite medical advancements the standard of actual nursing care has dropped dramatically. . When seen from a relatives point of view it is even more frightening! For this i do not refer just to C4 but other wards in the Trust.. Major medication attempted to be given incorrectly until patient stated it was incorrect and at a dose that could have killed them! Medication not given at correct times and when challenged nurse responds with "the patient will have had it when I gave it!" Patients unable to get to bathroom given no assistance to wash and change! Sheets , pillowcase, floor and locker bloodstained from a spillagein the morning had to be cleared by relatives in the afternoon..Staff failing to attend to patient on admission despite being asked to by relatives 3 times due to agony from retention of urine and why because it was nearly time to go home and they were filling in their paperwork! I could go on! We all know that achievement of targets within the Trust mean nothing! Many years ago we achieved Investors in People despite the fact that no one had had an appraisal in Maternity services in years! And despite the fact that midwives were and still are leaving in droves as morale is so low amongst them and nurses!
Quote from another article in this paper "Neil Upson, director at the Royal Blackburn Hospital, said: “We are still under extreme pressure from flu and norovirus." If you dont think there is a problem Fire Fly I would look again as other people think there is a problem!
[quote][p][bold]Fire Fly[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]kate11[/bold] wrote: No wonder there is a surge of Norovirus when they allow a visitor to lie full length in bed with her boyfriend all day and all night ,as I witnessed over Christmas on C4 ward at Blackburn!! Apparently it was because he requested it and nurses did absolutely nothing.. What happened to infection control and telling visitors and staff alike not to sit on beds! I am absolutely disgusted as were all the other patients in that ward.. Whatever next nurses with large visible tattoos!! That is another story! Doesnt make you have faith in the NHS at East Lancs does it![/p][/quote]Yet more criticism from Kate! First in relation to this news,Kate advised how the staff didn't look happy enough in the canteen at BGH, now you're visiting at RBH & its another complaint...do you have a career trawling the wards of the hospitals seeking fault or are you just one of those nurses or staff members that moan a lot & never try to make a difference constructively? Notice you made no comment about the Trust achieving level 3 for maternity services in the NHSLA assessment, a major achievement or on other stories that highlight any good from this trust. I wonder if you actually voiced your concerns on C4 at the time to the staff concerned...I suspect not because it's always easier to air ones views on the local papers website than to try & make any kind of constructive comment at the time.[/p][/quote]Complaints were made to the ward at the time and also a formal complaint is being been made ! But have to say Fire fly you seem very touchy about achieving level three so you must be a manager!!!! Having trained in the 70's i understand the system well and see that despite medical advancements the standard of actual nursing care has dropped dramatically. . When seen from a relatives point of view it is even more frightening! For this i do not refer just to C4 but other wards in the Trust.. Major medication attempted to be given incorrectly until patient stated it was incorrect and at a dose that could have killed them! Medication not given at correct times and when challenged nurse responds with "the patient will have had it when I gave it!" Patients unable to get to bathroom given no assistance to wash and change! Sheets , pillowcase, floor and locker bloodstained from a spillagein the morning had to be cleared by relatives in the afternoon..Staff failing to attend to patient on admission despite being asked to by relatives 3 times due to agony from retention of urine and why because it was nearly time to go home and they were filling in their paperwork! I could go on! We all know that achievement of targets within the Trust mean nothing! Many years ago we achieved Investors in People despite the fact that no one had had an appraisal in Maternity services in years! And despite the fact that midwives were and still are leaving in droves as morale is so low amongst them and nurses! Quote from another article in this paper "Neil Upson, director at the Royal Blackburn Hospital, said: “We are still under extreme pressure from flu and norovirus." If you dont think there is a problem Fire Fly I would look again as other people think there is a problem! kate11

1:27am Thu 10 Jan 13

cutthebull says...

Right lets get a few things straight here shall we, there has only been a slight increase on admissions due to flu/norovirus, this time of year is know as "winter pressures" or "winter crisis" in hospitals around the country, people with chronic illnessses get even more ill so asthma, COPD etc these people are expected to become ill & bear in mind this hospital runs at capacity majority of the time, with 1-2 escalation/overflow wards (approx 30 beds at a push) as soon as a few extra people get ill, which isn't hard when there's 1 hospital serving an area the size of east Lancashire, with a large majority in poor health with co-morbidities the service becomes overwhelmed. Literally, there's people on trolleys on corridors in wards & A&E. there's no extra staff, the pressure from the powers above is immense, & then there's grief from relatives & patients, there's social services are bed blocking as certain patients who require care homes can't go as their "struggling to place them" or home care packages aren't in place. Patients waiting all day for TTO's or transport.

Then there's the unnecessary patients who attend through A&E & require a bed for example the ones sooo drunk they cannot physically walk but you need to monitor them to make sure they don't choke on their own vomit. Then there's the people who refuse to help themselves, those who turn up with problems that they could a) sort themselves at a pharmacy b) attend there GP. But people cannot always be bothered to do this & treat A&E as a GP or call ambulances inappropriately. All this increases the hospital workload & there's only so many staff who are spread very thinly around. Kate11 I'm sorry but I'm someone who trained in the 70s & my guess is that your obviously not in the nhs anymore, you have no idea how bad the resources are, we thought we had it bad in the 80s I marched with my union when I though the changes to the service were bad, but that's nothing on what today is like, patients are (nearly) dying in corridors on wards. As for your problem of paperwork being done - its called accountability - it's in the NMC (previously UKCC) code of conduct & has to be accurate & detailed, as it can be called on for up to 25yrs later in court, so staff have to get their paperwork in order before they leave & I can gurantee not a single staff member ever gets out on time as they are too busy doing there nursing jobs, but nurses can only do one thing at once & then you have to prioritise. So if someone needs the toilet, but another patient is deteriorating & requiring infusions to attempt to stabilise them (save their life) then that will take priority.

As a sister on a ward it infruriates me that patients, relatives, visitors make out that nurses do nothing, ill be honest a minority don't & are lazy, same as any job. But please do not judge unless you have walked a mile in our shoes (that means recently Kate11) staff are seriously burnt out, morale is beyond an all time low! The pressure & demands increasing, management finding ways to squeeze/screw you even more, if a nurse is to assist the ward by working an extra shift, they will get paid even less than their normal wage, yet the agency nurse gets paid triple!

what is happening in our hospitals is dangerous & it could be you or your relatives. People will continue to remain oblivious until it does happen to them. The NHS is on its knees, it's at breaking point along with the ambulance & police service, but even now with the cuts it's in all the wrong places, people who manage but haven't got a clue being paid stupid amounts of money & a PFI building that is falling apart & which won't be paid back for stupid amounts of yrs for stupid money & any repairs that need doing to the building are charged at quadruple the amount a decent handyman would charge & often it's very poor quality. I could cry at how bad the nhs has become I remember the BRI days fondly & how care was far superior by todays standards, we had time for our patients & passion/drive to help people & money wasnt an nursing issue, care was, now money & targets have somehow taken priority & even i ask myself how did that happen? I have 11 months left in the NHS & I cannot wait as I feel like I'm witnessing the death of the service which is an atrocity & that day for privatisation is not too far away, RBH Virgin Healthcare or BUPA Healthcare etc.
Right lets get a few things straight here shall we, there has only been a slight increase on admissions due to flu/norovirus, this time of year is know as "winter pressures" or "winter crisis" in hospitals around the country, people with chronic illnessses get even more ill so asthma, COPD etc these people are expected to become ill & bear in mind this hospital runs at capacity majority of the time, with 1-2 escalation/overflow wards (approx 30 beds at a push) as soon as a few extra people get ill, which isn't hard when there's 1 hospital serving an area the size of east Lancashire, with a large majority in poor health with co-morbidities the service becomes overwhelmed. Literally, there's people on trolleys on corridors in wards & A&E. there's no extra staff, the pressure from the powers above is immense, & then there's grief from relatives & patients, there's social services are bed blocking as certain patients who require care homes can't go as their "struggling to place them" or home care packages aren't in place. Patients waiting all day for TTO's or transport. Then there's the unnecessary patients who attend through A&E & require a bed for example the ones sooo drunk they cannot physically walk but you need to monitor them to make sure they don't choke on their own vomit. Then there's the people who refuse to help themselves, those who turn up with problems that they could a) sort themselves at a pharmacy b) attend there GP. But people cannot always be bothered to do this & treat A&E as a GP or call ambulances inappropriately. All this increases the hospital workload & there's only so many staff who are spread very thinly around. Kate11 I'm sorry but I'm someone who trained in the 70s & my guess is that your obviously not in the nhs anymore, you have no idea how bad the resources are, we thought we had it bad in the 80s I marched with my union when I though the changes to the service were bad, but that's nothing on what today is like, patients are (nearly) dying in corridors on wards. As for your problem of paperwork being done - its called accountability - it's in the NMC (previously UKCC) code of conduct & has to be accurate & detailed, as it can be called on for up to 25yrs later in court, so staff have to get their paperwork in order before they leave & I can gurantee not a single staff member ever gets out on time as they are too busy doing there nursing jobs, but nurses can only do one thing at once & then you have to prioritise. So if someone needs the toilet, but another patient is deteriorating & requiring infusions to attempt to stabilise them (save their life) then that will take priority. As a sister on a ward it infruriates me that patients, relatives, visitors make out that nurses do nothing, ill be honest a minority don't & are lazy, same as any job. But please do not judge unless you have walked a mile in our shoes (that means recently Kate11) staff are seriously burnt out, morale is beyond an all time low! The pressure & demands increasing, management finding ways to squeeze/screw you even more, if a nurse is to assist the ward by working an extra shift, they will get paid even less than their normal wage, yet the agency nurse gets paid triple! what is happening in our hospitals is dangerous & it could be you or your relatives. People will continue to remain oblivious until it does happen to them. The NHS is on its knees, it's at breaking point along with the ambulance & police service, but even now with the cuts it's in all the wrong places, people who manage but haven't got a clue being paid stupid amounts of money & a PFI building that is falling apart & which won't be paid back for stupid amounts of yrs for stupid money & any repairs that need doing to the building are charged at quadruple the amount a decent handyman would charge & often it's very poor quality. I could cry at how bad the nhs has become I remember the BRI days fondly & how care was far superior by todays standards, we had time for our patients & passion/drive to help people & money wasnt an nursing issue, care was, now money & targets have somehow taken priority & even i ask myself how did that happen? I have 11 months left in the NHS & I cannot wait as I feel like I'm witnessing the death of the service which is an atrocity & that day for privatisation is not too far away, RBH Virgin Healthcare or BUPA Healthcare etc. cutthebull

1:38am Thu 10 Jan 13

cutthebull says...

Ps sorry about the ramble I'm post night shifts which I've had to split to cover sickness on my ward only got one night off so staying up tonight to not break the routine for going back in tonight, but nurses do go that extra mile to help our collegues out & for the sake of patient safety, even though its disrupting our personal lives & the patients will know no different as we try our best to deliver a service of care for them, if management allow it.
Ps sorry about the ramble I'm post night shifts which I've had to split to cover sickness on my ward only got one night off so staying up tonight to not break the routine for going back in tonight, but nurses do go that extra mile to help our collegues out & for the sake of patient safety, even though its disrupting our personal lives & the patients will know no different as we try our best to deliver a service of care for them, if management allow it. cutthebull

3:46am Fri 11 Jan 13

Protector says...

Again, I have taken the time to read all of the comments that you have all made. I have to say that I agree with the comments that cutthebull has made. Kate 11 you have to understand that the doctors and nurses and other front line staff are "powerless" within ELHT NHS Trust. They work with impossible staffing levels and with some managers that are completely uncaring and ineffectual. Have you ever worked with the new managers at ELHT? There are a handful of nice managers that do care, however, they are in the minority now. There are just a few in the Surgical Division, the Family Care Division and the Community. The managers that do care about the shop floor staff are usually soon shown the door because they do not fit within the new regime. The nice managers do not last here. If they are not shown the door then they usually leave because they cannot stomach it!!! I could give you several examples. Some of these remaining nice managers reside in the Maternity Services Division, hence why they have achieved a Level 3 in the NHSLA assessment for maternity services. Fire Fly, this is why the Maternity Services (i.e. the Family Care Division) have achieved this recognition. The rest of the Trust have not achieved an award like this. You have to ask yourself why? If you are one of these failing managers then you need to take a good look at yourself. You are not even close to achieving Foundation Trust status and we are in 2013. That is an embarrassment! It is very likely that you will be taken over by another more successful Trust. The doctors and nurses and other front line allied health care professionals are literally "bursting a gut" to provide a service with very limited resources. The nurses are in and out of consultation fighting for their bands and are constantly being down graded. This is a financial loss for many at around £8,000 per year. The managers never put themselves into consultation to reduce their own "fat cat" salaries. They constantly massage their own ego's and reward themselves for failure.

Let me tell you what is suffocating ELHT NHS Trust:
1. Limited resources on the shop floor. This includes nurses, doctors, pharmacists, porters, cleaners, equipment......The list goes on.....and on......and on.....
2. Low staff morale.
3. Ineffectual managers on high salaries.
4. Poor communication (most staff find out what is going on with their departments whilst having a conversation on the corridor).
5. An invisible Chief Executive who does not walk the shop floor and fails to show his face on the wards and the departments.
6. Managers who have a lack of respect for the staff on the shop floor and fail to listen to what they have to say.
7. Never ending consultations.
8. A lack of forward thinking by the Trust Bosses...hence cancelled operations!
9. "Disorganised" and "chaotic" surge policies which basically means that sick patients are moved onto corridors from A&E so that they do not breach the 4 hour A&E target. This is basically what I would call "cooking the books". And this gets better! The Medical Assessment Unit then have to send 12 more sick patients to the Medical Wards to wait on a corridor or in a day room ...unsupervised to wait for a bed too! It is like a very bad game of chess! This goes on all day and every day. The Trust bosses are so far removed that they have forgotten that there is a patient at the end of every "reckless" decision that they make. Would you like to guess who implemented this daft plan...."Neil Upson". The very same "concerned" manager who was in the Lancashire Evening Telegraph a few days ago reckoning to be concerned that the Trust had cancelled operations.
10. The closure of the Discharge Lounge. Again, it was the wonderful and very concerned "Neil Upson" who closed the Discharge Lounge as part of his Cost Improvement Savings (CIP's). This was a safe, staffed comfortable area for patients to sit and wait for their transport home.

A question that most would like to ask is why have the Care Quality Commission (CQC) not picked up on this when they have done their visits and audits in ELHT? The answer is, the visits that the CQC do are announced so the Trust bosses knows when they are coming! What is the point in that? If they did a spot check at the Royal Blackburn Hospital they would see this for themselves. When they do their visits the hospital is crawling with Executives and Managers who are tipping staff off to let them know that they are own their way to their ward or department. The staff have to go along with it. If they don't then they would be disciplined. Extra cleaning teams are deployed prior to the visits to clean areas that have not been lucky enough to get a "cat lick". This is not a direct attack on the cleaners, but they too are under staffed. The Ward Managers are put on duty and are given rehearsed scripts. If they were to deviate from that then they would be shown their P45 and the door. The front line staff have mortgages and other financial commitments. They cannot say no! The CQC do not see the true picture.

I think I have given you another good insight into how ELHT runs. I remember when Blackburn Hospitals were amongst the top 6 Health Authorities in the country. It is very hard to believe that now. The place is unrecognisable! I would like to urge the public to make a stand and support the front line staff. This is not their fault. If they could turn the clock back they would. They hate the fact that they are unable to meet the basic needs of their patients. After all, that is why they have chosen this profession. I have got friends who have left ELHT and the UK to work in other countries. They absolutely love it! They are able to meet all of the basic needs of their patients because they are working in hospitals that are well managed and have the privilege of having the full compliment of staff. They have also got the advantage of working for managers that really know what they are doing and actually do care.

If you read my comments from a few days ago you will see that I do know what I am talking about. Even with all the cheating that ELHT bosses do to achieve the 4 hour targets, they are still failing to meet the 95% targets. Please do not blame the front line staff for this. It is not their fault. They do care about the well being of the patients. They have been "disempowered" and have no choice. If the frontline staff continue to be persecuted in this way you will lose them one by one and you will never get that experience back. For example, if you lose 4 nurses with 20 years experience each then you have lost 80 years experience. You cannot ever replace that amount of experience. This is just one example of many.

The bottom line is ELHT Trust bosses do not deserve to be awarded Foundation Trust Status. They cannot even get the basics right! If they some how manage to manipulate Foundation Trust Status then "God help us"!!! It would be like sitting on a run away train that has got no breaks! A very scary thought!!!
Again, I have taken the time to read all of the comments that you have all made. I have to say that I agree with the comments that cutthebull has made. Kate 11 you have to understand that the doctors and nurses and other front line staff are "powerless" within ELHT NHS Trust. They work with impossible staffing levels and with some managers that are completely uncaring and ineffectual. Have you ever worked with the new managers at ELHT? There are a handful of nice managers that do care, however, they are in the minority now. There are just a few in the Surgical Division, the Family Care Division and the Community. The managers that do care about the shop floor staff are usually soon shown the door because they do not fit within the new regime. The nice managers do not last here. If they are not shown the door then they usually leave because they cannot stomach it!!! I could give you several examples. Some of these remaining nice managers reside in the Maternity Services Division, hence why they have achieved a Level 3 in the NHSLA assessment for maternity services. Fire Fly, this is why the Maternity Services (i.e. the Family Care Division) have achieved this recognition. The rest of the Trust have not achieved an award like this. You have to ask yourself why? If you are one of these failing managers then you need to take a good look at yourself. You are not even close to achieving Foundation Trust status and we are in 2013. That is an embarrassment! It is very likely that you will be taken over by another more successful Trust. The doctors and nurses and other front line allied health care professionals are literally "bursting a gut" to provide a service with very limited resources. The nurses are in and out of consultation fighting for their bands and are constantly being down graded. This is a financial loss for many at around £8,000 per year. The managers never put themselves into consultation to reduce their own "fat cat" salaries. They constantly massage their own ego's and reward themselves for failure. Let me tell you what is suffocating ELHT NHS Trust: 1. Limited resources on the shop floor. This includes nurses, doctors, pharmacists, porters, cleaners, equipment......The list goes on.....and on......and on..... 2. Low staff morale. 3. Ineffectual managers on high salaries. 4. Poor communication (most staff find out what is going on with their departments whilst having a conversation on the corridor). 5. An invisible Chief Executive who does not walk the shop floor and fails to show his face on the wards and the departments. 6. Managers who have a lack of respect for the staff on the shop floor and fail to listen to what they have to say. 7. Never ending consultations. 8. A lack of forward thinking by the Trust Bosses...hence cancelled operations! 9. "Disorganised" and "chaotic" surge policies which basically means that sick patients are moved onto corridors from A&E so that they do not breach the 4 hour A&E target. This is basically what I would call "cooking the books". And this gets better! The Medical Assessment Unit then have to send 12 more sick patients to the Medical Wards to wait on a corridor or in a day room ...unsupervised to wait for a bed too! It is like a very bad game of chess! This goes on all day and every day. The Trust bosses are so far removed that they have forgotten that there is a patient at the end of every "reckless" decision that they make. Would you like to guess who implemented this daft plan...."Neil Upson". The very same "concerned" manager who was in the Lancashire Evening Telegraph a few days ago reckoning to be concerned that the Trust had cancelled operations. 10. The closure of the Discharge Lounge. Again, it was the wonderful and very concerned "Neil Upson" who closed the Discharge Lounge as part of his Cost Improvement Savings (CIP's). This was a safe, staffed comfortable area for patients to sit and wait for their transport home. A question that most would like to ask is why have the Care Quality Commission (CQC) not picked up on this when they have done their visits and audits in ELHT? The answer is, the visits that the CQC do are announced so the Trust bosses knows when they are coming! What is the point in that? If they did a spot check at the Royal Blackburn Hospital they would see this for themselves. When they do their visits the hospital is crawling with Executives and Managers who are tipping staff off to let them know that they are own their way to their ward or department. The staff have to go along with it. If they don't then they would be disciplined. Extra cleaning teams are deployed prior to the visits to clean areas that have not been lucky enough to get a "cat lick". This is not a direct attack on the cleaners, but they too are under staffed. The Ward Managers are put on duty and are given rehearsed scripts. If they were to deviate from that then they would be shown their P45 and the door. The front line staff have mortgages and other financial commitments. They cannot say no! The CQC do not see the true picture. I think I have given you another good insight into how ELHT runs. I remember when Blackburn Hospitals were amongst the top 6 Health Authorities in the country. It is very hard to believe that now. The place is unrecognisable! I would like to urge the public to make a stand and support the front line staff. This is not their fault. If they could turn the clock back they would. They hate the fact that they are unable to meet the basic needs of their patients. After all, that is why they have chosen this profession. I have got friends who have left ELHT and the UK to work in other countries. They absolutely love it! They are able to meet all of the basic needs of their patients because they are working in hospitals that are well managed and have the privilege of having the full compliment of staff. They have also got the advantage of working for managers that really know what they are doing and actually do care. If you read my comments from a few days ago you will see that I do know what I am talking about. Even with all the cheating that ELHT bosses do to achieve the 4 hour targets, they are still failing to meet the 95% targets. Please do not blame the front line staff for this. It is not their fault. They do care about the well being of the patients. They have been "disempowered" and have no choice. If the frontline staff continue to be persecuted in this way you will lose them one by one and you will never get that experience back. For example, if you lose 4 nurses with 20 years experience each then you have lost 80 years experience. You cannot ever replace that amount of experience. This is just one example of many. The bottom line is ELHT Trust bosses do not deserve to be awarded Foundation Trust Status. They cannot even get the basics right! If they some how manage to manipulate Foundation Trust Status then "God help us"!!! It would be like sitting on a run away train that has got no breaks! A very scary thought!!! Protector

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